Threshold: Characters, Continued

Art by Julio Azvedo

Last month I announced plans to run an online Eberron campaign set in Threshold, a town on the edge of Breland and Droaam. In October, I worked with my Patreon supporters to establish important details about the town. The dominant faith is the Three Faces of Coin, a variant of the Sovereign Host focused on commerce and industry (both legal and otherwise). There’s an undercurrent of interest in the Cazhaak worship of the Dark Six, driven by the kobold community on the edge of town. Other significant segments of the population include Brelish veterans who fought for the local lord during the war, Cyran refugees granted safe haven in this backwater, and a few goblin families from Sharn.

With this completed, we’re now developing the Characters. Each session will have a different group of players, chosen from among the patrons. The players will choose their characters for the session from a roster of ten shared characters—and we’re currently establishing defining those ten characters. Three have been fully developed.

  • The Marshal is a Battle Master fighter with the Mark of Sentinel; a battle-scarred Sentinel Marshal from the oldest family in House Deneith, he was excoriated after they killed a war criminal who would otherwise have gone free. Now he wants to make a difference on the frontier.
  • The Smith is a beasthide shifter and a blacksmith from Cyre. She doesn’t remember anything that happened in 992 YK, but since then she’s found that her natural strength and shifter abilities have been enhanced in strange ways—giving her the powers of a Way of the Beast Barbarian. While she’s using these gifts to help protect the Cyran refugees and has become a local folk hero, the Smith mainly wants to work at the smithy she’s established with her partner, the Cannith tinker who built their prosthetic leg. The Smith and the Tinker are pictured above, as envisioned by Julio Azvedo.
  • The Greensinger is a druid of the Circle of Dreams; while they typically appear to be an elf, they’re actually a changeling. They grew up in Thelanis, in the realm of an archfey known as Fortune’s Fool, and this has led to an optimistic outlook; now, they seek to help the people of Threshold establish a relationship with the local fey. The Greensinger is a skilled storyteller and singer; they know many magical songs (spells), including a song that holds tremendous power—but singing it might kill them.

The Smith and the Marshal came from a poll selecting “The Muscle.” Currently we are finishing up “The Faith” with a poll that establishes details about The Flame, a kalashtar orphan who receives visions from the Silver Flame. We still have six characters to go, covering the Knowledge, the Cunning, and the Unexpected. Below you can see a screenshot of the poll for the Flame, which is going on for another day…

What I like about this process is that even though I’m presenting ideas, I don’t know how these characters will turn out. The question of whether the Flame is Last of their Line or Not Kalashtar will have a major impact on their long term story arc. Because I’m running this campaign for a hundred potential players instead of five, it’s a different process than creating characters with people around a table, but I’m enjoying seeing these characters come together. And I’d be remiss if I didn’t point out that these “Facts” play the same role as the secrets I present in my latest DM’s Guild book, Eberron Confidential…. In fact, Last of their Line is taken directly from that book!

I expect the first actual Threshold game session to be at the end of the month, given that there’s still six characters to develop. If you’d like to be a part of that process, go to my Patreon and check it out!

Thanks also to Threshold supporter Asura, who created the following image to lobby for the Flame in the last poll!

7 thoughts on “Threshold: Characters, Continued

  1. I’m just loving the whole process. The only problem I see so far is all the PCs are from further away then Breland . . . but with six characters to go that’s not likely to remain a problem!

    • The characters don’t have to be from Breland as long as they have a strong reason to want the town to thrive. The Smith is part of the Cyran community, and if anything Threshold is MORE important to them than to the Brelish, because they don’t have another home they could return to…

  2. Is it just me, or is the adorable couple in that illustration not really making eye contact? It feels like they’re looking past each other blankly.

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